Harvesting timber is an important part of sound forest management.  When done properly, timber harvests can actually improve the health of the forest.  Whether you are interested in harvesting for firewood, timber, wildlife habitat, or profit, your timber harvest should be a part of your forest management plan.  Your harvest should help you meet your landowner goals and objectives.  There are a range of tools available to help guide you when planning and conducting harvesting operations.

The VT Department of Forests, Parks & Recreation, with the help of a broad group of stakeholders and technical experts, has developed a comprehensive set of voluntary guidelines to help landowners make informed decisions when planning and conducting a timber harvest. Check out the Voluntary Harvesting Guidelines for Landowners in Vermont.

Discover all the resources available to assist you in planning and implementing a timber harvest:

  • Don’t know where to start?  One of Vermont's County Foresters can walk your land with you, providing general advice on woodland care and can offer an unbiased  opinion on your harvesting options.

  • Is your land enrolled in Vermont’s Use Value Appraisal Program (also known as “Current Use” or “Land Use”)?  Harvesting on enrolled land must be done in accordance with an approved management plan.  Contact your County Forester or private consulting forester for more help. 

  • Call Before You Cut produced by the Vermont Woodland Association provides practical advice to consider before you sell your timber.

  • A written timber sale contract protects both the buyer and seller when selling forest products and allows each to see in writing what is expected of them.  VT’s Voluntary Harvesting Guidelines include a section on Contracts and Insurance which is a must read for landowners considering a timber sale!

  • Wondering what your timber might be worth? Find out what wood markets are doing.  Checkout the Stumpage Price Reports, which provide a general indicator of past market conditions. Please note:  Individual woodlot conditions play a significant role in determining the actual stumpage price possible for a harvest.

  • Looking for forest product markets, a licensed forester or a logging contractor in your area?  The Vermont Forest and Wood Products Directory, created and maintained by the VT Working Lands Enterprise Initiative, is a visual locator for forest and wood products businesses in the state.  In addition, the VT Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation maintains a searchable online directory of Vermont Sawmills and Veneer Mills.

  • There are a number of laws and regulations which landowners, foresters and loggers need to be aware of when conducting a timber harvest.  The Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation maintains a Harvesting Law web page provides an overview of these regulations and statutes as well specific information on the  Acceptable Management Practices (AMPs) for Maintaining Water Quality on Logging Jobs in Vermont and the State’s Heavy Cutting Law.